Half-Life: Absolute Zero is a mod dedicated to recreating the version of Half-Life that we never got to experience fully. Our goal to recreate the art-style and chapters featured off in Half-Life builds from early to mid 1998. It will feature all the chapters, monsters and weapons that never made it into the final game. Players will now be able to experience Communications Center, the military camp in Surface Tension, and players will also get to fight cut enemies like the Human Sergeant, the Panthereye, Stukabat, along with cut weapons such as the Chumtoad.

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Haha, you're joking right? Half-Life: Absolute Zero can't be dead, right? ....right?

Nope, no jokes here. It is completely true, Half-Life: Absolute Zero has ceased development, after almost a decade worth of development.

So, why exactly are you guys abandoning Half-Life: Absolute Zero?

It has been nearly 10 years to the day since we started development on Half-Life: Absolute Zero and to be quite frank, we want to move on; passion only lasts for so long. If it didn’t work out for the past 10 years, I doubt it is going to work out for any more amount of time.

We were unable to secure any level designers since our search for one started back in December, 2018. So as a result, we were asking and relying on friends and friends of friends for help on the project, but ultimately most of them would only work on the project from a range of 3 days to 2 weeks until they would give up. As a result, not much really got done post-beta access release.

Realistically, we knew the project had been doomed since December of 2018. We had already missed our intended release date of November 26, 2018 (the 25th anniversary of Sonic Spinball’s European release, which was a week after Half-Life’s 20th anniversary, it is a in-joke among the team) and we had to delay to the 20th anniversary of Half-Life: Uplink’s release. A lot of us had been burnt out for working on the project for such a long time and we had a level designer who had vanished. We had put out a job listing on ModDB in hope we would be able to quickly find a replacement to be able to salvage the project, but that clearly didn’t happen.

What is going to happen to the Steam release of Half-Life: Absolute Zero?

We are currently actively working on getting the page delisted off of Steam around the 12th to prevent people from accidentally wandering into a barely functioning product. Despite being delisted from Steam, you should still be able to download the mod via “steam://install/<appid>.”

Why delist the store page opposed to condensing down the experience? Well, the mod only currently contains 2 chapters that we would consider mostly complete, which isn’t too exciting considering our 2017 demo contained 5 chapters. We had to deal with a surplus of people who didn’t read the store page or any pinned thread on the discussions and just assumed the product was 100% complete. If we had this problem during the public development phase, we’re going to have the problem tenfold when the mod is supposed to be “complete.” There’s also the fact we don’t want another unfinished product to clog up the Steam storefront, we would rather take responsibility and take down our product instead of letting it rot with every other abandoned project.

We only made a Steam release as our mod is not fully compatible with the 2013 updates to the GoldSource engine. Shadows cause the game to crash and various game behaviors would act sporadic. A Steam release allowed us to ship with a branch of the engine that we knew was fully compatible with Half-Life: Absolute Zero, but it still provided its own host of problems. Such as us changing the executable name which resulted in Windows 10’s internal compatibility hack for GoldSource games to not take effect, which resulted in the game’s window being extremely zoomed in. Luckily that was a fix as easy as just renaming the executable back to HL.exe, but there were still issues with the engine itself that were either fixed in the modern engine, were just things from Source that people expected to be in GoldSource, or were issues that affect most versions of the engine. Ultimately, there’s not a version of GoldSource out there that is perfect, they all have severe issues that hinder the experience some way or another and we had to pay the price for it. We did not and still do not have access to the engine code, so being able to fix anything with-in the engine would be impossible for us to do and if the engine was open source we could have at least attempted to but as it currently stands, GoldSource is closed source.

We will push out a final update for the mod on Steam, we held back on an update since August 14th in hope to be able to ship out a Milestone update in September, clearly that Milestone update did not work out.

What will happen with Half-Life: Absolute Zero after the 12th?

Well, the Steam build will be posted to ModDB for those to download there (minus the engine, of course.) But more importantly, the entire development drive of Half-Life: Absolute Zero will be uploaded to the internet and will be licensed under Creative Commons. This will allow any developer or modder to be able to reuse our work and all you need to do is credit us for the work you’ve borrowed! This had been our plan for several years now, regardless of completion, releasing the full source tree on the 10th anniversary of the mod’s development beginnings. This allows us to be able to have the community learn from our work and for our work to live on beyond a beta mod.

We are currently actively sorting through our unsorted backups making sure as much of our content is backed up and available. This will release on the 12th, alongside the mod release on ModDB.

What will happen to Cobalt-57 after the 12th?

This does NOT mark the end of Cobalt-57 as a team, we have no plans to dissolve or disband! Little do many people know, Cobalt-57 was never created as a throwaway team to have a pseudonym for all of us as a team for our modding projects. We will be shifting our focus to game development after the 12th, in fact, we actually have some games and projects in the pipeline. Some relating to pre-existing IPs (some of which will likely never see the light of day) and some being completely original IPs. As you may expect, yes, we are still in fact looking for level designers and even more than that! We can’t promise that we’ll hire or even speak to everyone, but we will read every message.

In-closing.

While it is sad to see Half-Life: Absolute Zero go, we’re glad it is over. It is bittersweet, sure we didn’t get to complete the project that united us to begin with; but we will forever get to keep those memories and get to work together on things that don’t limit our creative direction.

Finally, we would like to thank you for supporting us til the very end. While we don’t know when the next time you’ll hear from us will be, we will still be creating things and when we stop creating we’ll let the world know. If you want to keep in-touch, please follow us on Twitter, as that’s currently our only social media presence where we can provide quick updates.

Until next time,

- Cobalt-57

Half-Life: Absolute Zero - Now Available in Active Development

Half-Life: Absolute Zero - Now Available in Active Development

News 9 comments

After nearly a decade worth of work, Half-Life: Absolute Zero is now available early for everyone to get to see the final homestretch of development.

Half-Life Absolute Zero Update 7 - An Active Development Release

Half-Life Absolute Zero Update 7 - An Active Development Release

News 5 comments

A release of an active development build, future plans, and disclaimers will be all documented in this latest update for Half-Life: Absolute Zero.

Half-Life Absolute Zero Update 6.5 - Current State of Affairs

Half-Life Absolute Zero Update 6.5 - Current State of Affairs

News 5 comments

It is one of THOSE updates, the one that basically says nothing has been happening with the project since the last update. The update no developer likes...

Half-Life Absolute Zero Update 6 - Not to Schedule Edition

Half-Life Absolute Zero Update 6 - Not to Schedule Edition

News 11 comments

In this update, we learn that us setting dates for our project only leads to everything falling apart.

RSS Files
Half Life: Absolute Zero - Early Access Release

Half Life: Absolute Zero - Early Access Release

Full Version 22 comments

This is an Early Access build of Half-Life: Absolute Zero. Mod is a work in progress.

Half Life: Absolute Zero - Development Drive Snapshot

Half Life: Absolute Zero - Development Drive Snapshot

SDK 6 comments

The full development drive for Half-Life: Absolute Zero as of October 12th, 2020.

Half-Life: Absolute Zero - Day One

Half-Life: Absolute Zero - Day One

Demo 36 comments

Hello, welcome to the demo release of Absolute Zero, after 6 years in development, hopefully it has been worth the wait. We're excited to finally show...

Half-Life: Absolute Zero - January 7, 2016

Half-Life: Absolute Zero - January 7, 2016

Demo 5 comments

This is an Absolute Zero build from a few days after we went public with Absolute Zero back in late 2015.

Half-Life: Absolute Zero - Absolutely Abandoned

Half-Life: Absolute Zero - Absolutely Abandoned

SDK 6 comments

Previously scrapped content uploaded for people to use. Also includes 2 Absolute Zero pre-release builds.

Half-Life E3 1998/1997 Release

Half-Life E3 1998/1997 Release

Full Version 9 comments

Half-Life E3 1998/1997 first breath of air since 2011, the original build from 2010. Half-Life E3 1998/1997 is a recreation of the earlier builds of Half-Life...

Comments  (0 - 10 of 294)
hillionliat
hillionliat

Rip the best beta mod

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HellGe
HellGe

Goodbye legendary mod(

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cat_marine
cat_marine

F

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hillionliat
hillionliat

Wish you could have at least made an update to fix the problem with precached, squadform.wav, so at least all maps in the mod could be launched

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Xylemon
Xylemon

Nice Job! Congratulations

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soldiergaming
soldiergaming

new update when? thx for the attention

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HEVScientist
HEVScientist

Bruh, there wont be a new update since the mod is cancelled.

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soldiergaming
soldiergaming

that sucks

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Poggo96
Poggo96

hellooooooooo

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